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Gay and Lesbian Cops: Diversity and Effective Policing

Roddrick A. Colvin
Gay and Lesbian Cops: Diversity and Effective Policing
ISBN: 978-1-58826-837-2
ISBN: 978-1-58826-934-8
2012/213 pages/LC: 2011041077
"A comprehensive overview of lesbian and gay issues in law enforcement in the United States and the United Kingdom."—Warren S. Weller, International Public Management Journal

"A 'must read' for any scholar or practitioner interested in community policing, whether it be for implementation or purely academic purposes."—Corina Schulze, Contemporary Justice Review

"An accessible, empirically supported argument for increased diversity within policing organizations.... This work serves as a real resource for public administration scholars."—Shannon Portillo, Public Administration Review

"A long-overdue, much needed book-length treatment of the presence, conditions, and importance of sexuality diversity in law enforcement.... Informative, easy-to-read, and valuable."—Richard Tewksbury, Journal of Criminal Justice Education

"Colvin's well-written and important book is the most significant work on this subject since Stephen Leinen's Gay Cops.... This worthwhile book would be valuable for all levels of criminal justice students, as well as interested members of the general public. Essential."—Choice

"Superbly illustrates attempts to include lesbians and gays in the ranks of law enforcement, as well as the pitfalls and successes of such practices…. A must-read for anyone committed to increasing diversity in the criminal justice field."—Wayne Gillespie, Georgia Gwinnett College

"A major contribution.... Colvin illuminates the struggles faced by gay and lesbian police officers and shows how to overcome barriers, in the process demonstrating the importance of equitable working environments for all."—Susan L. Miller, University of Delaware


Roddrick Colvin assesses the impact of lesbian and gay police officers on law enforcement in the US and the UK, as well as the policies that enable a diverse work environment.

Colvin tracks the evolution of police agencies toward being more "gay friendly" both as employers and as service providers. He also provides insights into the day-to-day barriers and opportunities that lesbian and gay officers experience working within organizations that traditionally have been hostile to them. Integrating quantitative and qualitative research, he offers a compelling demonstration that police agencies can best fulfill their missions when they are representative of the communities they serve.


Roddrick A. Colvin is associate professor of public administration at San Diego State University.


  • Lesbian and Gay Police Officers.
  • Old Issues, New Realities.
  • Law Enforcement's Move Toward Diversity.
  • Officer Experiences and Perceptions.
  • Unique Roles, Unique Contributions.
  • Urban and Rural Contexts.
  • Professional Police Associations.
  • Best Practices for Recruitment and Human Resources.
  • Roadmap for the Future.